Sailor Moon Crystal: Episode 3 [Rei – Sailors Mars]
This week the episode begins with Queen Beryl’s resolute displeasure with Jadeite. Afterall, he has failed her twice now, and she can’t stand for that. Two of his fellow Dark Kings appear to chastise him and OH SHIT Zoicite is really hot and cannot even be construed as a man now. Holy wow. Nephrite and Zoicite appear to criticize Jadeite and then ask what the Silver Crystal it is.
Beryl reveals it is a crystal rumored to allow the one who controls it to rule over the universe itself, but cuts short before explaining more. She commands Jadeite to destroy the Sailor Senshi, and far away a woman with long black hair has a vision of terrible things coming to fruition.
Usagi’s friends at school discuss a demon bus that disappears at 6pm. Usagi is of course is sleeping during the conversation and completely oblivious to any problems, only getting up when Luna mentions they’ll go to the arcade. Ami is thinking about her mission as a sailor scout while Usagi is playing games, and once again she receives a prize obviously rigged by Luna to appear. Usagi’s reluctance is definitely more cute in this anime, though completely expected.
Ami mentions to Usagi there is a beautiful girl on the bus she sees occasionally, and once she sees her Usagi is struck with admiration. The girl is indeed beautiful, and Usagi even follows her off of her stop. The girl however saw Usagi and had a vision of a beautiful castle, and had to look away as the image confused her.
Rei is incredibly beautiful in this adaptation and let me stress this: NOTHING like her original anime counterpart. The Rei we’re seeing now has evoked a hundred times more sympathy and enjoyment than the original Rei, and I find her character much more moving. Rei has a gift that has made others shun her as well as misunderstand her. One of her only friends is a little girl named Mii who comes to her stop before going home. Mii has disappeared and her mother is there asking her for help, but Rei has no idea how to find Mii-chan.
Usagi questions her about Mii and Rei says that the 6 o clock demon bus might have been why Mii went missing. The next day a lot of students comment about the bus. Ami and Usagi decide to investigate but Ami is busy with cram school, leaving Usagi alone to do it herself. She and Luna are talking when a certain man usually wearing a tuxedo ends up sitting beside her. Can I just say . . .DAAAAMN MAMORU he is VERY good looking in glasses.
Mii-chan’s mother comes back to hassle Rei and accuse her of being involved, but Usagi steps in to defend her. Rei explains people are always skeptical of her because she has powers but Usagi says she’ll help her find Mii. Rei tells her to leave and that she shouldn’t be involved with her, but upon meditating gets a vision of Jadeite hurting Usagi and runs after her. She happens to see the demon bus and it’s driver, who she saw in her vision, and gets knocked out by Jadeite. Usagi catches a glimpse of her unconscious on the bus and chases after it.
Usagi gets trapped in the other world but uses her transformation as a beacon to allow Ami and Luna to find her, and the two reconvene in the world Jadeite has trapped the victims in. Meanwhile, Jadeite remarks that he feels strange at the sight of Rei who is incredibly beautiful. He feels drawn to her, but cannot elaborate on the feelings before Usagi and Ami come to challenge him. He easily fends them off and begins to freeze them, Rei realizes it is Usagi and feels empathy and surprise at the thought that someone else has powers. Rei stops Jadeite and it’s revealed she is Sailor Mars!
Let me just say…she has the BEST TRANSFORMATION SCENE so FAR. Both the other scenes are awful and pretty much the most forced and uninteresting transformations in all of magical girl anime. Mars actually felt sexy, elegant, and powerful in this transformation. I actually enjoyed it. Let’s hope Venus and Jupiter get the same level of good so I won’t completely hate my favorite part of magical girl animation. (yes I like transformations okay)
Mars and Moon together manage to stop Jadeite and save all of the captives, and Ami reassures her that they’ve been looking for someone like her all along. Rei is obviously relieved that she has found the reason she was born with these powers. I have to say this representation of Mars is completely likeable and absolutely heart breaking at times, a beautiful person with a gift that only wanted to be accepted. Ami wanted friends, but Rei just wanted to understand why it was she had these powers and who she was. I like her much more now knowing the reason she is who she is, and I’m ecstatic to see her represented in Crystal. I teared up at her smile at the end, knowing she too has found a friendship where she is happy and able to exist with self fulfillment now that she became a Sailor Senshi.
Episode 3 is the point as which AngryAnimeBitches usually looks at an anime and decide if they want to keep reviewing it. Without a doubt this is a show that did not need the 3 review basis, but let me go on record stating that while the original was beautiful and completely changed my life, this show in it’s own rights has created a set of lovable and nostalgia evoking characters I find myself wanting to feel for. Looking at this show and comparing it to the original creates a sense of familiarity and compassion I didn’t have before. If Crystal keeps up with the way it’s going, sans the transformations, I will actually love it more than the original. This is a more mature adaptation of the original that can only be considered a love letter to true Sailor Moon enthusiasts. I will see you all again in two weeks, for the Masquerade episode!